The Grade 2* listed Elmore Court has just hosted its first wedding at the UK’s newest and most unique party venue, The Gillyflower in Gloucestershire.

The Gillyflower is now fully open and has just welcomed its first ever wedding as a newly constructed ‘eco’ ballroom built entirely of ‘rammed earth’ and timber, both materials sourced directly from the Elmore estate. Complete with a stunning new lighting installation from artist Bruce Monro, called ‘Light Shower’ and made up of 1,800 optic fibers, the cascading halogen light source is the icing on the ‘The Gillyflower cake’.

The ambitious project is the brainchild of new heir Anselm Guise (he inherited the property from his uncle 6 years ago). The 1,000 acre Elmore estate and Court, with views over the Cotswolds and River Severn, has been in the Guise family for over 750 years but Anselm was forced to make some radical decisions for the estate to ensure its future. With a background in festivals and music (he founded The Glade Festival) Anselm’s solution has been to go back to the roots of the estate (Elmore Court was originally built as the Guise family’s party house) and throw it open to private functions such as weddings, launches and corporate events.
“To see The Gillyflower hum with the celebrations at our first wedding has been the perfect end to a very busy 2013. And the feedback from our first couple means we can’t wait to host more celebrations in 2014,”commented Guise.

The Gillyflower
The new space is the main entertaining and banquet space for weddings and events and is Elmore’s own unique twist on a permanent marquee constructed using the ancient technique of ‘rammed earth’. It provides 215m2 of dining space and 75m2 of dance floor with a flat meadow roof and has state of the art sound system (Funktion One), DJ booth, bar, cloakrooms. Due to the density of the building material it is highly soundproof and it opens out onto rolling fields and woodland creating a stunning backdrop.
In addition all public areas of the main house have been refurbished, as well as eight bedrooms which will be available to event guests and private house parties.
The creative events team at Elmore will be on hand to advise on how to put on incredible celebrations incorporating live music, performing arts as well as woodland BBQ banquets.
Inside the house
All the bedrooms have been refurbished using a combination of contemporary and classic colour schemes and furnishings including Zoffany and Lewis and Wood.
The Master ‘Bridal’ Suite has a Caesar sized bed (8ft wide) and oak panelling. A further seven en-suite bedrooms are packed with interesting features such as a 1636 Four Poster Bed with a William Holland copper roll top bath in the Oak Room, with the largest bedroom, the Porch Room, a roomy 41m2, featuring an incredible 12 ft wide ‘extreme ultra king’ bed with hand carved estate oak bedhead.
Within the house the entertaining space comprises four distinctive reception rooms; The Dining Room, The Main Hall, with precious restored Teniers tapestries at an impressive 100 m2 in size, The Drawing Room and The Morning Room. The license to hold civil ceremonies is for the Main Hall or church services can be arranged in the nearby village church. The maximum numbers for events are 200 for dinner dances and up to 500 for cocktails in the Gillyflower, or 40 for private dinners in the main house.
Catering options are imaginative and focus on locally sourced produce as well as a ‘grow to order’ service for your menu utilising Elmore’s extensive kitchen gardens.
Elmore Court is located in a small village surrounded by canals on the edge of the Cotswolds, just a few miles from the city of Gloucester and 10 minutes from M5 junction 12.
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Why The Gillyflower?
The Guise family has owned the land at Elmore since 1262. The family had arrived in England nearly 200 years earlier with William the Conqueror and originally settled in what is now called Aspley Guise in Bedfordshire.
They were granted Elmore by a man named John De Burgh, whose father was a senior figure in the court of Henry 3rd. The rent was set at ‘the clove of one Gillyflower’ each year.
Relatively new heir Anselm Guise appeared on Channel 4’s Country House Rescue – where Ruth Watson had suggested he turn Elmore into a cookery school. This idea was quickly dismissed and he has chosen to go back to the roots of the estate as it was originally built as the Guise family’s party house, throwing it open to private functions such as weddings, launches and corporate events.
Prices for venue hire range from £2650 to £5500 – this includes the use of the House, Gardens and The Gillyflower for your day and overnight as well as the Master Suite. Longer periods can be arranged.
From the Master Suite to the Bachelor Room, there will be eight newly refurbished double bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms available. The bedrooms vary in price, ranging from £120 – £300 including breakfast.
House party rental wills be available Mon-Thurs throughout the year and over weekends outside the main wedding season. Prices start from £2000 per night, B&B with accommodation for 16-20.
The Main Hall can host civil ceremonies for up to 108 guests
There are lots of lovely local churches nearby (Elmore/Hardwick and Longney) each with a maximum capacity for approx. 200.
Food prices start at around £42.00 per person for a three course menu with wine packages starting from £18.50 per person.

Source: Fiona Reece PR